Today I have a student that probably thinks that I am the meanest, least fair teacher he has ever met. I decided to hold him out of an activity that he really wanted to do because I felt that his participation might be unsafe to others.
In schools we are always having to balance the needs of each individual with the collective good of the group. As a parent I understand the important role that parents have in advocating for the needs of their child. They are the most important voice for their kids at a time where the kids aren’t neccesarily capable of advocating for themselves in a mature way. The voice of parents in schools is very important and is one that teachers need to listen and respond to.
As teachers and administrators in school we have the important role of balancing the needs of all of the children in our care. We need to strive to create an environment where no one gains at the expense of others. That is not to say that we need to treat every kid the same. As one of my colleagues is fond of saying, just because one kid needs glasses doesn’t mean we are going to start handing them out to everyone.
As a school it is important to maintain that delicate tug of war between the needs of the individual and the needs of the group. I hope that as a school community we can continue to work together to maintain that balance.